MASTER FILMMAKER MARK MACKNER reviews
GODZILLA LEGENDS #3: TITANOSAURUS!

COMIC REVIEW

GODZILLA LEGENDS #3: TITANOSAURUS

STORY: Mike Raicht

ART: Tony Parker

COLORS: Ian Herring

PUBLISHER: IDW

REVIEW: Master Filmmaker Mark Mackner

Greetings, Godzilla Geeks! Tis I, noted kaiju scholar and local indie horror icon MASTER FILMMAKER MARK MACKNER with a review of GODZILLA LEGENDS #3: TITANOSAURUS! As some of you may know (And the rest of you can correctly assume), I am absolutely LOVING this LEGENDS mini-series. So, how does this latest installment stand with THIS lifelong monster kid?
The first two issues dealt with undisputed kaiju icons. They started off proper with ANGUIRUS, a fan favorite in the world of kaiju. His place in monster movie history was cemented when he was introduced as the very first opponent to Godzilla in the very first Godzilla sequel, GODZILLA RAIDS AGAIN. After that, he gained greater popularity as Godzilla’s ally in such classics as DESTROY ALL MONSTERS and GODZILLA vs. GIGAN. LEGENDS #2 featured RODAN, the giant pterosaur who was the very first Toho monster to star in a color film, and appeared alongside the Big G in the aforementioned DESTROY ALL MONSTERS, as well as GODZILLA vs. MONSTER ZERO (aka INVASION OF ASTRO MONSTER) and others.
But here, with issue #3, they’re going a little more obscure by highlighting TITANOSAURUS, a beast known to kaiju diehards only. Ever heard of GODZILLA vs. TITANOSAURUS? No? That’s because there’s no such thing. Titanosaurus was never the headline baddie in a Godzilla film, or any other kaiju film, for that matter. He only made one appearance, as the secondary threat in 1975’s TERROR OF MECHAGODZILLA, the final entry in the original series of Godzilla films (or the “Showa” series to the initiated). They didn’t bring him back for the 80’s/90’s Godzilla series. He didn’t show up in the Millenium series. He wasn’t even in FINAL WARS. What the Hell? Why no love for Titanosaurus, Toho? I’ve always been a fan. Much like Godzilla, he’s a giant amphibious dinosaur. He put up a helluva fight in TERROR OF MECHAGODZILLA. And, while he didn’t prevail, he did actually survive. Also, his action figures sell for outrageous sums of money online, so I can’t be the only one who loves him.
Well, someone at IDW must also align themselves with Team Titano, because he’s one of the dozen or so Toho kaiju that they purchased a comic license for. Which brings us to this, GODZILLA LEGENDS #3. Titano had briefly appeared battling KUMONGA the giant spider in the recent GANGSTERS AND GOLIATHS mini, but this is the first ever comic book where HE is the star! The featured monster! Finally, after 35 years, it’s Titanosaurus’ time to shine!
Here’s the problem… well, he’s not actually in this comic very much. He appears on 5 pages, I think. And at least two of those pages are big pictures, not panels. So, what is MOST of the comic about? Well, it’s about this kid named Tristan. Tristan has displayed exceptional powers of telepathy and telekinesis, and is thusly approached by someone of like abilities to join a secret team of government-sponsored telepaths tasked with finding a solution to the worldwide epidemic of giant monster attacks. How does Titanosaurus figure into this? Well, Tristan develops a psychic connection to the beast, and… anything more would be a SPOILER, and I hate those kinds of reviews so I’ll move on.
What I loved about the first two issues of LEGENDS was that, while we were given the obligatory human characters and subplots, the stories were very specifically designed for those monsters. The Anguirus story is about him once again being the underdog against a larger monster. The Rodan story was about his efforts to locate and protect a lost egg. But in this latest issue… they could have inserted ANY monster into this scenario. It’s not a distinctly TITANOSAURUS story. That’s kind of irksome for me. Also, if I want to read a comic about an angsty kid with X-men style super-powers, there’s LOADS of other titles I can turn to. But when I pick up a GODZILLA comic, I’d prefer if the primary focus was on the monsters. This issue plays out like the first issue in a larger story, but as far as I know, this is it for these characters. So I don’t care all that much about Tristan’s story. It’s never going to be resolved, so I’m not going to get too invested in it. Writer Mike Raicht does score some geek cred by incorporating a human character from the movies, as well as an alien race (which one I won’t say, as that’d be a pretty significant spoiler).
Still, all I wanted here was a good story featuring an obscure movie monster who really deserves more attention. What we DO get is great. The Art Adams cover is fantastic. All these covers have been beautiful so far. I’d like larger framed prints to hang up in my house. You can tell that Adams is really relishing this opportunity to render these magnificent monsters on comic book covers, and his work alone is worth the price of the comics. As far as the interior, Tony Parker is a gifted monster illustrator, and Titanosaurus’ one or two appearances are stunning. His full-page intro is epic, and the panel where he’s face to face with Tristan shows the loving detail that Parker has granted this unjustly forgotten Toho creation.


In the end, is it everything I wanted it to be? No, but rather than harp on the imperfections, let’s just look at the simple facts. Here we have a comic book featuring a rampage by “the other monster from TERROR OF MECHAGODZILLA”. That, in and of itself, is for me a reason to celebrate. So, if you’re like me, you really do need to get this. I never thought I’d see a Titanosaurus comic, and here it is! That’s really fucking cool. If you looked at the headline of this article and thought, “Titano-WHAT-now?” then proceed directly to an X-Men or Avengers title because there’s more super-powered shenanigans here than kaiju action, and since this Tristan kid isn’t going anywhere you might as well read about super-powered characters that actually have futures.
NEXT time, in GODZILLA LEGENDS #4… HOLY FUCKING SHIT, IT’S THE SMOG MONSTER!!!! HEDORAH!!!! NEVER before featured in a comic book! And the back cover of #3 promises a 3-way battle between Smoggie, Godzilla, and Mechagodzilla! NO WAY they can fuck THAT up! Hedorah is one of the most unique kaiju ever, so I can’t imagine that’ll be some “shoehorn some fill in the blank monster into a telepathic teen” story. That back cover picture is AWESOME!!!! Can’t wait!!!!
And THAT is THE WORD, so sayeth THE MASTER!!!!


Mark Mackner is the Mastermind of Monstros Madre, the Philly-based production company responsible for such experimental short films as “bored.dumb” and “Skee-titzin”. He is the writer/director of the forthcoming feature “Daisy Derkins vs. the Bloodthirsty Beast of Barren Pines”, starring Troma’s Lloyd Kaufman and Poptards founder Johnny Destructo. He is also developing EMBALMO!, a new web series based on his 2010 short film of the same name, as well as SILAS KILLINGTON’S CAVALCADE OF CARNAGE, a late-night horror hosting show. Check out a bunch of his short films, as well as updates on all his projects in the works, at monstrosmadre.com.

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1 Comment to “MASTER FILMMAKER MARK MACKNER reviews
GODZILLA LEGENDS #3: TITANOSAURUS!”

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  1. i’m actualy disagree with author

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